Remember Excite? The web portal pioneered the “My Excite” home page when ‘start pages’ like Netvibes and Pageflakes were barely a twinkle in their creators’ eyes and Widgets were still strange things made by Apple which nobody used (OK, so that’s still true). Well now Excite is back to claim it’s start page crown – if there is such a thing.
Excite MIX is Excite’s new personalised homepage and it’s being pioneered first in the UK, starting this week. The beta version is part of a total redesign of the Excite.co.uk portal, obviously targeted specifically at the UK audience.
Excite MIX looks to be pretty sleek start page which allows users to do what they normally do on start pages, which is pull in RSS feeds and their favourite widgets. The service contains a feed aggregator, podcast player, mail modules, multipage functionality and notepad.
Click on a link and an Ajax window pops up with the story and offering functions like posting to Del.icio.us, Digg and Newsvine. Could this be the beginnings of a full Web 2.0 makeover for Excite? It looks like it.
In the lead-up to the launch Excite’s Rome-based Amanda Lorenzani has been writing an ‘official’ Excite MIX blog about the service while they ran in stealth mode, in part in an attempt to create a little ‘word of blog’ about the service.
Meanwhile the Excite UK portal has been redesigned and updated to coincide with the launch of Excite MIX, which went properly live over the weekend, and now features a MIX icon top right.
Excite Europe is currently owned by Ask.com (part of Barry Diller’s IAC/InterActiveCorp), however it operates entirely autonomously of the US operation, out of Rome.